Easy Recipe for Cooking Deer Tenderloin

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Cooking deer tenderloin doesn't have to be the most difficult thing you try to do all week. Learn about an easy recipe for cooking deer tenderloin with help from Balducci's Food Lover's Market's Corporate Executive Chef Jason Miller in this free video clip.

Part of the Video Series: Robust Recipes
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First thing we're going to do is we're going to get our venison tenderloin here, we're going to clean it. We're going to put in a marinade, preferably you want to marinade this for at least a couple hours. It depends on what kind of venison you're using. This particular, it's farm raised, it's from New Zealand, it's actually a red stag. This, like I said, it's farm raised, so it's much more tender than if you would harvest one yourself in the wild. Wild meat, you know, really free range meat is much more tough. They're out in the wild, they're doing their thing, they develop much more connective tissue and internally they're tougher. So, if you are using a wild venison, you know, a freshly harvested venison, you want to really marinade this for at least 24 hours. But since we're using the farm raised, we're going to just do it for, we can marinade for a couple of hours. We're going to wrap it in some good antibiotic-free, all- natural Serrano Ham and then, we're going to make a fig gastrique. It's kind of a sweet and sour and savory sauce, it goes really well with wild game. It's actually a very classic sauce, it's a syrup, a reduction made from vinegar, sugar and a little bit of dried fruit. Today, we're going to use fig. O.k., the first thing we're going to start with today, is need to clean these venison tenderloins slightly. And when you buy these in the store, they normally come pretty well cleaned. It's just one piece of silver skin, it's really just connective tissue that you need to remove, it's really, it's inedible. As long as, as much as you cook, it's not very tasty. So, you want to get your knife, just make a slight puncture, maybe half way down and just work your way back. So, the next thing we're going to do, is we're going to marinade the tenderloin. So, it's pretty simple, basic game marinade. We have some red wine, the red wine really helps, helps tame the flavor of the game and you know, it is really gamey. I love it, some people might not, but this really helps, same thing with the honey. Some salt and pepper and that's it. You know, you want to give it a good toss. We're going to get it finished with just a little of olive oil. This is farm raised venison, so we're going to let this marinade for just a couple of hours. So, what you need to do, is you need to go to your local gourmet food market, or your local Balducci's,and you need to get some Serrano Ham from the deli. You want to tell them to slice it very thin and on this wax paper, preferably, it doesn't really stick, these cured meats don't really stick to this, to this wax paper. So, what we're going to do now, is we're going to lay our venison tenderloin, kind of right in the middle. You want to be careful with seams, you don't want to, you want to make sure the seam is kind of at the bottom. So, I'm going to go kind of half way. Just going to take this, I'm going to take this wax paper and fold it up. And hopefully, the ham is going to now stick to the venison, which it does. And we're just going to wrap it up with the paper, kind of making it tight, pull back just a little bit. What I have here, a couple that have been chilling for a few hours, you can feel they're nice and firm. There's really no need for any kind of toothpick or anything to put on here, it should stay, if you cook it proper. You don't want to go super high heat on this, the higher the heat, the more this ham is going to contract, it's going to seize. It's just not going to look right. So, nice, kind of medium low, you don't want it too cold, but not too hot. Just a nice crackle when it hits the pan. Once we get a quick saute on the shallots and the figs, we're going to de-glaze the pan with a little bit of vinegar. Just add some vinegar, we're using cider vinegar today, you could use balsamic, you can use sherry, sherry is very classic with a gastrique. We're going to add just a little it of brown sugar. And we're actually going to kick it up a notch, we're going to bind it with a little bit of veal stock, we're going to give it some good body. And we want to reduce this down by, oh. I got it. And now, that we got this seared pretty well on all sides, I'm going to take this pan and we're going to go straight to the oven. O.k., its been just a few minutes, we're going to come over here and check our venison tenderloin. Oh, now that looks great, smells great. So, what we're going to do, is I'm going to put this on a roasting rack here and we're going to let this rest. It is so, so critical for a piece of meat like this, to be able to rest. It needs to, in a sense, just relax, let the juices to redistributed throughout. If you cut it right away, all the juices are going to come right out of it. So, we're going to give this a good five to ten minutes, just to sit here. We're going to come over here and check on our sauce. Our sauce looks great, it's kind of been reduced by, about two-thirds, we've got a nice, little syrup. Great, strong, kind of sweet savory, sour flavor. it's going to go really, really well with this venison, we're just going to let this rest for a few more minutes. And then, we're going to plate it up for you. O.k., we've got our venison tenderloin here, rested for a good, few minutes, got our blood work through it. We're just going to take this now and we're going to slice it. And there you have it, Serrano wrapped venison tenderloin with a red wine marinade, with a fig gastrique.

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